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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    The (mis) education of UA

    Editor’s Note: This is the second in a series of three editorials regarding the dean of students’ new red tag policy, which allows the Dean of Students Office to punish students who have received a red tag for an off-campus party. Today’s editorial will address problems with the university’s approach, and Thursday’s editorial will outline solutions to the red tag problem.

    In Friday’s Arizona Daily Wildcat, Associate Dean of Students Veda Kowalski said that the red tag policy was created “”to enhance students’ education about the impact of their behavior on the community.””

    Now there’s a way to spin it to the students.

    In the spirit of ‘enhancing’ student education, the Dean of Students Office receives a weekly report of red-tag violators, and then determines whether or not the listed persons are UA students.

    Furthermore, we have something to be proud of. Not only do we get heightened education about community relations, but we’re also the only school in the Pacific 10 Conference to seek out and punish students for unruly off-campus behavior.

    In many cases, other Pac-10 universities will only get involved if the violation is on-campus or university-sponsored. This is the case at Stanford, Washington and University of Southern California.

    And at Oregon, the only university that has a program similar to the UA’s, the university may extend the code of conduct to off-campus events, but they don’t actively seek out records from Seattle police in an effort to ‘educate’ students.

    So be careful, because your name could be floating around on a veritable blacklist of red-taggers.

    Not only is it frivolous to pursue students for university sanctions, but Kowalski doesn’t even seem to know if this new pilot program will have a positive impact on students’ lives. When asked about the potential impact, Kowalski simply replied, “”I have no idea.””

    Well, we’re not so sure ourselves.

    Not only is this policy intrusive at best, but also it unnecessarily targets students who should be shouldering the responsibility of adult life – including the task of being good neighbors.

    College is not simply a way to put off “”the real world”” for four years, as students sometimes jokingly refer to it. It is, in fact, a means of entering the real world. For many students, attending a university will be their first real taste of adulthood.

    This policy will only breed resentment, and rightly so, for in “”the real world”” people are not punished twice for the same offense.

    If this policy has any effect at all, it is more likely to produce apathetic, cynical adults who have learned to regard any institution – even one of learning, like the UA – as tyrannical and invasive.

    Arbitrary use of authority does not teach responsibility, but subservience. Rather than accountability, it encourages alienation. And instead of independence, it teaches dependence.

    Leave law enforcement to the police. The UA is too noble an institution to waste its time and energy on a policy that effectively informs its students that they are not mature enough to take responsibility for their own lives.

    Opinions are determined by the Wildcat opinions board and written by one of its members. They are Justyn Dillingham, Allison Hornick, Damion LeeNatali, Stan Molever, Nicole Santa Cruz and Matt Stone.

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